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Federal appeals court panel upholds Springfield nipple ordinance

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) – An appeals court panel has upheld a Springfield ordinance that prohibits women from showing their nipples and areolas in public.

The Springfield News-Leader reports the ruling Monday from a three-judge panel of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals is the latest in a four-year controversy that began when some women wearing pasties walked shirtless through Springfield.

After that protest, the Springfield City Council passed an ordinance prohibiting women from showing their nipples in public. The advocates and the ACLU sued, saying the ordinance discriminated against women.

A federal judge upheld the ordinance in 2017.

In its ruling Monday, the appeals court panel said Springfield’s ordinance is related to the government’s interest in promoting public decency.

ACLU of Missouri’s Legal Director Tony Rothert said he hoped the full Eight Circuit Court would consider the case.

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Information from: Springfield News-Leader

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